With climate change becoming an increasingly serious environmental issue, it’s critical to keep an eye on your loved ones, including your pets! Climate change is causing a slew of environmental issues that are affecting people all over the world, but what about our pets? Animals are affected by climate change in the same way that humans are, so we want to protect them from the effects of climate change while also taking steps to reduce our own pets’ carbon “pawprint.” Continue reading to get answers to your questions about how climate change and global warming have affected our pets.
Are pets environmentally friendly?
Pets, especially dogs and cats, have a significant environmental impact.
This is due in large part to the amount of meat that cats and dogs consume – roughly 64 million tonnes of carbon dioxide are produced by pets with meat-based diets. However, in some ways, pets can help the environment, such as encouraging pet owners to walk their pets instead of driving.
What is the most eco-friendly pet?
According to research, tortoises make excellent pets for the environment.
Tortoises have a slow metabolism and do not require much exercise. They also consume less water and, for the most part, eat herbivorous diets, making them more environmentally friendly than other pets.
Low-maintenance pets, such as fish, snakes, and birds, are also more environmentally friendly than others. Spiders, small rodents, and other small-sized pets are also among the most environmentally friendly.
Do pets have a carbon footprint?
Having a pet adds to your carbon footprint.
While different pets have different carbon footprints, each pet emits carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, increasing your household’s carbon footprint. Having fewer pets results in a lower carbon footprint associated with pets.
While adopting a pet from a shelter will still leave a carbon footprint, it will often cause less environmental damage than purchasing one from a breeder, as breeders may wish to continue breeding more pets, increasing their carbon footprint.
Carbon emissions are bound to rise as more pets are born. Another thing you can do to help combat both climate change and pet overpopulation is to have your pets spayed or neutered to avoid unwanted pregnancies.
How can pet owners reduce their carbon footprint?
1. Investigate eco-friendly pet foods.
Avoid excessive packaging and pet food made primarily from beef products, as beef ranching generates high carbon emissions. Instead, feed your pets fish, chicken, or even insect-based food, or make your own pet food. Check to see which pet food brands are more environmentally friendly than others, and buy locally to reduce carbon emissions from national or international transportation.
If you have not been instructed by a veterinarian to use vegetarian or vegan pet food, proceed with caution. If these pet foods are not properly monitored, they may cause health problems in pets due to a lack of nutrients or protein.
Reduce the amount of treats you give your pet, which also contributes to unhealthy levels of pet obesity.
2. Avoid using plastic products on your pets.
Plastic is a common material used in the production of pet toys, grooming tools, litter, and other items used by pets on a daily basis. Make your own pet toys out of old household items, or look for locally made pet products. Choose products made of eco-friendly materials whenever possible.
Biodegradable doggie bags and bamboo kitty litter are two examples of environmentally friendly products.
3. When travelling a long distance, consider leaving your pets at home.
Airplane and car emissions have a large carbon footprint, and bringing your pets along would only add to it. Consider leaving your pet at a kennel or with a trusted pet-sitter while you are away from home, or go to locations closer to home if you must bring your pet with you.
If you’re travelling a short distance, especially if you’re staying close to home, walk or jog (if the location is particularly close) with your pet or cycle to your destination rather than driving them.
How are pets affected by the environment?
Pets can be physically harmed by extreme weather conditions.
To protect your pet from extreme weather, be aware of any excessive heat or cold warnings in your area. With climate change causing an increase in temperatures, it is especially important to understand and protect your pet from heatstroke. When it’s extremely hot in your area, keep your pets inside and away from windows whenever possible, and make sure to leave plenty of water out for them. Take them for walks earlier in the day or later in the evening to avoid the hottest times of the day.
It is also critical to protect your pets from harsh weather during the colder months. In cold weather, provide blankets and clothing for pets, and be aware of the risks of taking pets out in the snow, such as slipping on ice or, in extreme cases, frostbite or hypothermia.
Warning: Leaving a pet in the heat for even a short period of time can cause heatstroke. Watch out for symptoms including excessive amounts of panting, shaking, lethargic behaviors, restlessness, breathing rapidly, and appetite loss to recognize developing heatstroke in pets.
How can animal shelters be more sustainable?
Eco-friendly supplies and methods can be used in shelters and sanctuaries.
An animal shelter can improve its sustainability by using environmentally friendly materials and supplies, such as recycled paper, reusing older materials for pet care and building, and cleaning with sustainable chemical solutions when necessary. They should properly dispose of waste and consider using filters or bottled water to keep water fresh and healthy. They may also consider using solar energy or other energy-efficient lighting sources.
Encourage employees to carpool or ride their bikes to work to help reduce carbon emissions from vehicles.
Creative Commons License